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Transport and Logistics Business is one of the fastest-growing industries in today’s world. This business not only involves the carriage of goods and materials, but it also includes shipping and storage of goods, including household items, office supplies, and many others. You will likely face many challenges when starting this kind of business, but fortunately, there are also many solutions. This article addresses some of the answers and provides you with some helpful tips to get started.
What Is A Haulage Company?
A haulage company is a company that has a fleet of trucks moving goods from one place to another. There are several considerations when setting up this business, including the type of freight to be carried and the distance that goods need to travel. There is a lot to think about, but it can be a lucrative path for those willing to work.
What Makes Transport and Logistics Business So Profitable?
The reason why it is such an attractive field is because of its cross-sectoral nature. Transporters can work across industries such as construction, manufacturing, warehousing, supply chain management, and retail, to name a few. There are also multiple reasons why this sector is growing at such an exponential rate. One of them is that transportation technology like e-commerce and online shopping has increased the demand for products delivered by transporters. Another reason is the increase in global mobility, making people travel more often for leisure or business purposes.
How Can You Get Started Effectively?
Suppose you are interested in setting up your own company based around the movement of people or goods or both. You will need to begin by considering the basics, such as how you will finance your vehicles to ensure them, to the more complex like staff training and marketing your business.
Consider How You Will Finance Your Business
Logistics can be a cash-intensive industry to begin in, and you will need to consider how you will finance the operation. Once things get moving, you should be able to rely on your cash flow to keep the enterprise running smoothly, but before you get to that stage, you will have to purchase or lease your vehicles. The option you choose will depend on numerous things, such as how you have set up the business (sole proprietor, partnership, etc.), and what your business plan dictates. In this regard, you have two options:
- Installment purchasing
Some people choose to purchase their vehicle outright, but this decision will impact their budget. Leasing your vehicle is a great option that provides you with the flexibility of keeping the same car for a set period. Vehicle leasing is fundamentally renting your vehicle from the company you lease it from for a predetermined amount of time, usually between 12-36 months, during which they’ll provide you with all the maintenance and insurance needs. After the lease ends, you’re free to buy your car at its current market value at any time. Although this sounds amazing, there are some downsides, including that you will be limited in the annual mileage, and it can be a high monthly cost.
Many benefits come with buying a car instead of leasing one, such as the satisfaction of owning your very own vehicle and the convenience of having other assets. However, there are also drawbacks, such as paying a large down payment, and you will still have monthly bills to pay. In addition, you will have to deal with the maintenance and insurance yourself.
Protect Your Assets
Once you have bought or leased your vehicles, you will have to think about insuring them. If you have contracted your trucks, the leasing company will likely pay for the primary insurance of the vehicles themselves. However, you will need to cover every aspect if you plan to set up a sole proprietorship and already own a truck you intend to use. When searching for relevant insurance, you should opt for commercial hauling insurance. This type of insurance policy covers the liability of the business owner or operator, or their employees, for damage or loss arising from their commercial transportation of goods. The chief types of haulage insurance are:
- Motor vehicle liability insurance
- Business Interruption Insurance
- General Liability Insurance
- Cargo Insurance
- Trucking Liability Insurance
The benefits offered by this type of coverage often include legal defense, medical expenses, and economic loss.
Hire The Right People
Hiring is one of the most challenging aspects of the business. You need to find drivers who have passed various tests and received the correct licenses but are trustworthy and don’t mind being away from their families for long periods. Some essential qualities you should look out for include:
- Reliability: You need to count on them to be there when you need them, and they can represent your company when on the road.
- Punctuality: Logistics is a cutthroat business, and if you cannot deliver the goods on time, your customers will find a company that can.
- Diving record: It should be clean, or there should be an excellent reason if not.
- Hearing and vision are excellent: They will be driving heavy goods vehicles, so their visual and auditory acuity must be good or be up to standard with the use of glasses or hearing aids.
- Willing to submit to regular drug testing: There can be no doubt in your mind that your drivers are clean. Any problems will come back to you. Therefore, they should be willing to perform random drug tests when they are required.
- Communication skills: Drivers who possess good communication skills are more likely to convey messages and issues effectively to management and co-workers.
- Mechanical ability: Although drivers do not need to be mechanics, having a minimum knowledge of the subject can help them detect and communicate any potential problems in a vehicle.
Marketing Yourself Is Important
Haulage companies are in a competitive market, and you need to be prepared for the entire spectrum of marketing. This can include online and offline. Online marketing efforts will be related to setting up a website to showcase your services, while you will focus your offline endeavors on networking with others in the industry.
If you plan to start a transport and logistics business, you must be prepared for its challenges. Starting a business is not an easy task, but if you are ready to put in the time and effort, nothing can stop you from achieving your goal.